ROSEMONT, ILL – The Chicago Wolves dominated the Bakersfield Condors at home Saturday night, recording a 6-1 win at the Allstate Arena. Five different goal scorers contributed to the lopsided win.
The Wolves came roaring out of the gates Saturday night as they jumped out to a 3-0 lead after 20 minutes. Kevin Lough opened the scoring just 2:10 into the game when his wrister from the blue line beat Nick Ellis to give the defenseman his first AHL goal. Saturday’s game also marked Lough’s first under his newly-signed standard player contract.
“It was exciting, you know,” said Lough. “You always remember your first goal. Don’t know if it was too, too memorable, I can’t really say. It took me a few seconds to realize I was the one that actually scored it.”
Brandon Pirri recorded his first goal since the birth of his first child earlier this week just two minutes after Lough’s goal. Pirri’s 16th goal of the year went off the glove of Ellis and in. Wade Megan scored a goal of his own at 14:32 of the first after he snagged the puck from a grinding Brett Sterling and fired on net.
David Gust got one back for his team halfway through the second as his tip beat Kasimir Kaskisuo, spoiling the goalie’s shutout bid. Pirri regained the three-goal lead for the home team two minutes later when he grabbed the pass from T.J. Tynan and snapped it on net.
Though the Wolves entered the third with a 4-1 lead, it was not the largest margin the Wolves would have. Adding insult to injury for the visitors, Stefan Matteau worked with Tynan to make it 5-1 at 12:00 of the third. Mackenzie MacEachern, also fed by Tynan – who recorded four primary assists in the win – scored a shorthanded goal just 47 seconds later to seal the 6-1 win.
After dropping three out of the last four games coming into Saturday’s game, Lough felt the Wolves had a bit of a hangover from their 14-game point streak.
“You get so used to winning that you might be trying some riskier plays. Just in the back of your mind you’re always thinking, ‘Oh, we’ll be able to come back, we’ll be able to come back.’ We had some bad habits creep into our game, but the coaching staff made sure to really turn it around.”
With two wins over the Condors in the past week, the Wolves completed a season sweep of Bakersfield. Coincidentally, Rocky Thompson also swept the organization he first got his coaching start in. He was all smiles after the win.
“It was good. Wins are wins, it’s important. But they’re very good friends of mine over there [in the Condor’s locker room] that I’ve worked with for a number of years, so I know that that team is well-coached. They’re a good team and this was important for us to be able to win without a doubt. Not privately, or personally, but more so because of the team.”
As for the mood new dad Pirri is in?
“It’s been the best week of my life and baby dad strength’s real.”
Kaskisuo made 22 saves in the win, while Ellis made 32 in the loss. With the win, the Wolves improve to 20-15-5-2 on the season.
The Cleveland Monsters travel to Chicago for a Sunday matinee game. Puck drop is scheduled for 3 p.m. As always, be sure to follow @SinBinWolves on Twitter for current news and game updates.